AIFC is the first platform in the region to provide businesses with systemic access to Islamic finance, a rapidly growing and promising investment segment. By various estimates, this segment now totals over $2.5 trillion globally and is expected to reach $3.8 trillion by 2023, which accounts for 1% of the world's total financial markets assets. Islamic banking represents the largest segment (estimated at $1.7 trillion or 70% of total Islamic finance assets). The Islamic insurance industry (takaful) and capital markets have shown strong growth as well.
Kazakhstan plans to develop Islamic finance industry in order to create alternative sources of financing for state and municipal projects, as well as for private ones. For this purpose, a special regulatory and legal regime has been set up in the AIFC that is consistent with international best practices and standards. AIFC’s Islamic finance industry includes a range of participants, including Islamic banks, asset management companies, investment funds, takaful and retakaful companies and other Islamic financial organizations, as well as leading international Islamic financial institutions.
Islamic Finance Master Plan for the Republic of Kazakhstan 2020-2025
The Master plan has been prepared by the consultant under the technical assistance grant of the Islamic Development Bank and should not be considered as a binding document, but rather a consolidated brief of recommended initiatives for implementation. The Master Plan outlines the key strategic initiatives and recommendations aimed at fostering a more diverse and innovative financial services sector of Kazakhstan through developing the Islamic finance industry over the next five years.
“Guidelines on Islamic banking and financial products” and “Sukuk (Islamic Securities) Guidelines"
The first handbook in the Islamic finance industry of Kazakhstan - “Guidelines on Islamic banking and financial products” and “Sukuk (Islamic Securities) Guidelines" has been developed by IFAAS (Islamic Finance Advisory & Assurance Services), UK, under the technical assistance of the Asian Development Bank (ADB).
It is expected that the handbooks will become a useful resource for a better understanding of Islamic finance products not only for financial institutions, such as banks, insurance, and consulting companies but also for potential consumers of services, who desire to increase the capital in accordance with their ethical principles.